Monday, January 12, 2009

running for fun(ding)

In a new article on, Brian Sabin wrote about the need for a "runner's bailout:"

The new administration says its health care plan will require coverage of “preventative health services.” Ladies and gentlemen, I propose to you: What is better preventative medicine than running? The activity burns calories, lowers your cholesterol, and keeps your weight in check. Running regularly taught me to put a greater value on proper nutrition and sleep habits. I’ve become a more healthy person through running, and I’m sure many others have, too.
So I’d like to ask you, the members of the powerful running lobby, how we can shape public policy in our favors. What sort of rewards would we like to see under a new health care plan?
• Should your treadmill
be a write off?
• Should we offer a pre-tax allowance to pay for health club memberships?
• Can a proper pair of running
be considered medical goods? (After all, things can get pretty nasty with the wrong pair of shoes.)
• Or how about my favorite idea so far: We get reimbursed for the miles we log. It’d be just like using your own car on a corporate road trip. You’d be paid a reasonable rate that takes into little revenue stream for us. Of course, it could also have unintended consequences – crowded account fuel (Powerbars, Gatorade, pancakes)
and depreciation (muscle soreness, shoe wear, stinky clothing)."

While these ideas are more of a fantasy than a reality, the author makes a point. As runners, we're working dilligently in order to maintain our health. Shouldn't there be some sort of reward for that? Some companies offer incentives for their employees to lose weight. What about those who continually maintain a healthy lifestyle? Why shouldn't my marathon entry fee be reimbursed? After all, I think entering such a race is proof that I've committed myself to living well, right?

I did a hard tempo run today - it felt really good and exhausting. It's amazing how you can convince your body to go fast that you want it to, or than it's used to going on a regular basis. I've never one to really go for speed workouts: I would much rather see how long I can run versus how fast I can run. Even though it's not my favorite thing to do, I do want to improve on my speedwork. A lot of articles have said that marathon training can help you with your shorter-distance racing. I'll need to wait a bit before I test that, since I most likely won't be doing any racing before the marathon.

On a somewhat amusing note, the news in DC (other than that big party on the 20th) is that "cold winds" are coming. As someone from upstate New York, I'm guessing that it's not as bad as it could be at home. We'll see!

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